Oscars 2017: PwC Accountants Hire Bodyguards After Death Threats For Their Mistake

The infamous Best Picture blunder is easily the biggest mistake ever made in Oscars history.

But since the La La Land and Moonlight mix up on Sunday night, the fallout has been huge for the people held responsible for the mix up.

The Price Waterhouse Coopers employees who were accountable for the mistake – which saw the wrong winners announced for the ‘Best Picture’ award – have now had to hire bodyguards after receiving death threats for their wrong-doings.

TMZ – Brian Cullinan & Martha Ruiz

Brian Cullinan and Martha Ruiz have received a huge backlash since the incident happened; pictures of both of their homes were posted online followed by numerous threats against them.

Some of the online hate messages included shocking statements such as, ‘I hope you get fired and get cancer’.

The duo were in charge of the award envelopes at Sunday’s event, which ultimately led to presenters Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway announcing La La Land as the winner instead of Moonlight.


PwC decided that hiring bodyguards for the accountants was the most appropriate step to take to ensure their safety in the aftermath of the Oscars fiasco.

Cullinan received an even further backlash after it emerged he posted a photo of Emma Stone, winner of Best Actress, backstage after her win, at the very moment the mishap was unfolding live on the Oscars stage.


The PwC accountant’s actions perhaps suggest his careless attitude to the responsibility he had, particularly as sharing backstage posts on social media is hugely frowned upon by the academy.

Academy President Cheryl Boone announced yesterday that both Cullinan and his co-worker Ruiz will not be returning to work for future Oscars ceremonies and have been fired from their positions.

It was unclear why Cullinan even had a copy of the Best Actress card, which he mistakingly gave to Beatty, as in rehearsals it was practised that he would not hand that card out.

Reuters – Brian Cullinan left

When La La Land were called out as winners of the category, Cullinan was reportedly seen shouting backstage ‘it’s the wrong one’, but didn’t proceed to act upon his mistake quickly enough.

Instead, he turned to colleague and fellow accountant Martha Ruiz to try and figure out what had gone wrong.

Presenter and Bonnie & Clyde star Warren Beatty described the moment as ‘one of the strangest things that has ever happened to [him]’.